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Challenger Hood Scoops: Additional Engine Cooling

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The first thing someone thinks of when they hear "muscle car" they think of a crazy drag machine with either a blower popping out of the hood or a shaker intake. Nowadays, muscle cars like the Challenger are more readily found on the highway. To maximize your ride's efficiency and intimidation factor, a street legal hood scoop is the way get fresh air into your engine bay.

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Classic Mopar styling has always put hood scoops to use. They enhance aesthetics while boosting performance; this makes them a natural soulmate for American muscle cars. Third-generation Challengers are also genetically compatible with hood scoops. Regardless of the year of a car, or the engine within, hood scoops are a beneficial add-on to the platform.

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What is a Hood Scoop?

Hood scoops are devices that fashion to the hood in order to draw air into the engine compartment from outside of the car. By doing so, the engine is subjected to a cooler atmosphere and fresh air is readily available to the induction system. These are both contributing factors to enhanced performance. Aftermarket hoods can be purchased with hood scoops built into them.

The benefit of buying a hood with a scoop built into it is that there is no work required in order to make it appear as a factory feature. These hoods are also typically fiberglass making them much lighter than the factory steel hood.

Factory Hood Scoops

Third-gen Challengers have hood scoops built into their hoods from the factory. The design of the hood has vents built right into them. These are non-functional hood scoops though. No air can actually pass through them.

Scat Pack Challengers actually take advantage of this design as they have functional vents built into the hood from the factory. Shaker hoods and Hellcats have features which are designed to pull in air from the outside of the vehicle as well.

Non-functional to Functional: The factory vents may be non-functional but this doesn’t mean they can’t be converted. The vents are not permanently attached to the hood and can be replaced with vents that are functional.

This option is extremely cost effective and is the perfect solution for those who are looking to draw cool air into the engine bay without having to dump a bunch of money on an aftermarket hood or cut the factory hood in order to install a functional hood scoop.

What do Hood Scoops Do?

On older cars, the air cleaner is located directly on top of the engine and this actually gives them the advantage of using cool air for the induction system. With third-gen Challengers, the air intake leads to the front of the engine bay meaning they can’t exactly take advantage of the hood scoop in terms of cold air being introduced to the induction system.

This still doesn’t render them entirely useless on these cars, as the hood scoop will still work to give the car additional cooling. Keeping the engine cool will still help keep the operating temperature down, which is healthy for the engine in terms of lifespan and slight gains of performance.

Hood Scoops vs. Shakers

Shakers are not to be confused with traditional hood scoops, but they do work in a similar manner as hood scoops would on an older car. Shaker systems are an additional route for air to actually be drawn in by the factory air induction system.

The intake system still draws in air from the front of the engine compartment as it would on a standard Challenger intake system. This intake is split to run to the shaker which sits on top of the engine and draws in air from outside of the engine bay.

Setting up a Shaker System vs. a Hood Scoop

To set up a shaker system is a bit more complicated than installing a hood with a hood scoop on it. To install a hood with a scoop simply requires that the factory hood is replaced and the aftermarket hood is installed.

The hood will likely need to be painted after its purchase, but this is a given. With a shaker set up, the induction system will also need to be altered in order to be installed. Once the shaker system is installed, the hood will also need to be replaced in order for the shaker to peer through to the fresh air.

Other Methods of Ventilation

Hood scoops are not the only method used to draw in air from the outside of the vehicle. If someone is not interested in cutting up or replacing their factory hood they can take other routes that will maintain the factory appearance, such as:

Cold Air Intake: The factory induction system on Challengers is designed to draw in cold air from outside of the car. They don’t run to the outside of the car though; they simply draw in air from an area of the engine bay where cold air is made available. True cold air intakes can be installed that do draw in air directly from the outside.

Hood Vents: Installing hood vents to draw in cold air is an easy, cheap, and effective manner to bring cold air into the engine bay. The amount of air that can be drawn in by this method is limited though and will not be as effective as a large hood scoop.

Hellcat Intake: Hellcats made use of the headlights to double as a route for air to be drawn into the intake system. Setting up a similar system on any Challenger won’t bring down the temperature of the engine bay but will offer cool air up to the engine as a cold air intake would.

Fitment includes: 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, SRT-8, RT, SE, SXT, RallyeRedline, ScatPack, Hellcat, GT, TA, Demon